Kindergarten is such an important year for your little one. I understand that the transition from preschool to kindergarten is a big one. But, rather than mourning your baby growing up, recognize that this year is one of the most critical years in your child’s life.
According to a study reported by the NY Times, “Students who had learned much more in kindergarten were more likely to go to college than students with otherwise similar backgrounds. Students who learned more were also less likely to become single parents. As adults, they were more likely to be saving for retirement. Perhaps most striking, they were earning more.”
Therefore, you should understand that this year is important. And, it is even more of a reason for you to listen to the teacher. We want your child to succeed. Looking back on my years as an educator, here are some of the things I wish the parents of kindergartners knew as they sent their babies off into the world:
I care about your child.
I genuinely care about your child. I want your child to develop at the right speed and to learn as much as possible. Most of all, I want your child to stay safe in my classroom and to succeed when he/she leaves my classroom. I know all my students’ names and what makes them unique, and it is common for me to think about them after the school day (and year) is over.
Talk to me – not about me.
Communication is necessary for our relationship. I much prefer for parents to contact me directly with issues rather than talk about me to other people…or go above me before speaking to me.
I know better than to believe everything your child tells me.
Kindergarten teachers are masters are deciphering the truth from the embellishments. So many parents worry about their child’s teacher believing outlandish stories. Trust me – I won’t believe every crazy thing they say about you if you don’t believe everything they say about me. I will learn to distinguish the truth from the lies, and I hope you do too.
Fill me in on your child’s uniqueness.
While I will try my best to learn all your child’s unique traits, if he/she has special quirks, please let me know. I cannot promise I will be able to make every accommodation, but it will help me to be more understanding.
We do use all the supplies on the list.
I know the school supply list is overwhelming and that you may not think all the supplies are necessary. Please know that everything I put on the list will be used in the classroom this year – and we will run out of supplies before the year’s end. Thank you for helping supply the classroom with many items I could not afford on my own.
Your child will be busy.
Expect your child to be tired in the first few days of kindergarten. The transition from preschool hours to a full school day is exhausting. We will stay busy in the classroom having fun and learning. In a few weeks, your child should have adjusted.
I want your child to love school.
I went to school because I love school and I love kids. Most teachers end up in the classroom for the same reason. My greatest hope is for your child to leave my classroom loving school.
We are a team.
We both want your child to succeed. We are on the same team. If we work together, this will be a fantastic year for your child. Speaking of which, I’d love to have you volunteer in the classroom as you are able.
Thank you for the special privilege of teaching your child this year. Trust me to care for your little one day in and day out.